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  1. #1
    Maybo is offline Senior Member
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    all part of our

    The tokens controversy was, I suppose, all part of our getting more acquisitive as we grew older.

    What's the difference if I say "the tokens controversy was, I suppose, all part of us getting more acquisitive as we grew older."?





    Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
    https://archive.org/stream/NeverLetM...tMeGo_djvu.txt
    If I make any mistakes in English, please let me know!

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Re: all part of our

    There's no difference in meaning. Some teachers will insist on your using "our" there instead of "us" but in everyday English, you'll probably hear "us" more often.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. #3
    Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
    Charlie Bernstein is offline VIP Member
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    Re: all part of our

    "Us" I can live with. I draw the line at "we."

    And what I hate most is people saying "myself" because they don't know whether to say "I" or "me": My wife and myself went to Bermuda.

    Instead of living with being wrong half the time, they consign themselves to being wrong all the time.

    Is it just an Americanism?
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  4. #4
    Maybo is offline Senior Member
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    Re: all part of our

    But I have questions. Does "getting" act as a noun in the sentence? Like "our getting"?
    Last edited by Maybo; 29-Oct-2017 at 15:11.
    If I make any mistakes in English, please let me know!

  5. #5
    Maybo is offline Senior Member
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    Re: all part of our

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    'Getting' is a gerund, a verb-form that has some of the characteristics of a verb and some of a noun.

    Those who consider it more noun-like would use 'our'; those who consider it more verb-like would us 'us'.
    If I consider it is more noun-like, can I add "were" into the sentence? E.g.The tokens controversy was, I suppose, all part of our getting were more acquisitive as we grew older.
    If I make any mistakes in English, please let me know!

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: all part of our

    I really wouldn't do that.

  7. #7
    GoesStation is online now Moderator
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    Re: all part of our

    Quote Originally Posted by Maybo View Post
    The tokens controversy was, I suppose, all part of our getting were more acquisitive as we grew older.
    Adding were makes the sentence ungrammatical and incomprehensible.
    I am not a teacher.

  8. #8
    Maybo is offline Senior Member
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    Re: all part of our

    How should I parse the sentence?
    Because I don understand why the noun "our getting" can be followed by an adjective.
    If I make any mistakes in English, please let me know!

  9. #9
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    Re: all part of our

    I think the whole gerund/participle distinction is what is confusing you. I had to read your sentence with were in it several times before I understood what you meant. Think of getting as having the meaning of becoming, and don't add any more verbs to the sentence.
    I am not a teacher

  10. #10
    GoesStation is online now Moderator
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    Re: all part of our

    Quote Originally Posted by Maybo View Post
    The tokens controversy was, I suppose, all part of our getting more acquisitive as we grew older.
    Quote Originally Posted by Maybo View Post
    How should I parse the sentence?
    Because I don understand why the noun "our getting" can be followed by an adjective.
    You can start by removing inessential parts: The controversy was part of our getting acquisitive. This means "We got greedy, which led (in part) to the controversy."

    Does my bare-bones version of the sentence make it any clearer?
    I am not a teacher.

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